Good Cop, Bad Cop is the fifteenth episode of the fifth season in this television sitcom on Family Matters, which was aired from ABC on January 21, 1994. It was directed by Richard Correll and written both by Sara V. Finney and Vida Spears.
Plot[edit | edit source]
Carl has warned Eddie about his late-night carousing before. So when Eddie is arrested for a traffic violation, he says he was the victim of racial profiling by a pair of overzealous patrolmen. Carl refuses to accept his son's story of how he was "a black kid in a white person's neighborhood" until he sees it for himself. He soon tracks them down at a coffee shop and decides to get their side of the story. What he finds out is the ugly truth (it's all like Eddie explained) when the senior officer is revealed to be a severe racist. An angry Carl threatens to report the senior officer for his racial profiling, while also urging his rookie partner to re-examine his own attitude. Meanwhile, Urkel gets more than he bargained for when he takes a worried Richie to the dentist.
Synopsis[edit | edit source]
Laura and Steve are watching Shai perform in their music video, when she fantasizes having them perform in her living room. She's excited at first but is horrified to see Urkel's face on their faces. She screams and runs up the stairs into her room. Carl is excited that the Bears won and both Eddie and Waldo celebrate with him. Later on Waldo spills the beans about Eddie's speeding ticket. Carl is upset and has warned him about his late-night carousing before, threatening to confiscate his license for a year if he does any more of it.
Meanwhile, Laura and Urkel are studying in the kitchen when Richie comes in saying he's nervous about his upcoming dental check up as Laura tries to convince him there's nothing bad about it. Steve convinces Richie to let him come along to show him there's nothing bad about a dental check up and promises him ice cream afterwards.
The next day, Carl asks Harriette to go get him some pie. Mother Winslow tells him to get it himself and calls him a lazy slug. Minutes later, Eddie comes home and tells them that he got arrested for a traffic violation. When asked why, he says he was the victim of racial profiling by a pair of overzealous patrolmen. Carl refuses to accept his son's story of how he was "a black kid in a white person's neighborhood", thinking he is just making up more lies to cover up for another late-night carousing. Eddie is hurt that he doesn't believe him, citing it the worst thing which ever happened in his life. Harriette and Mother Winslow call Carl out for this. When he tries to defend himself, Harriette points out that Eddie hasn't done any late night carousing since he had a job at Mighty Weenie. She and Mother Winslow convinces Carl to get the other cops' side of the story first before punishing him.
The next day, the friendly and charming Dr. Smiley gives the good news to Richie about his teeth being in excellent condition and gives him cinnamon dental floss. Steve asks for cinnamon dental floss and Dr. Smiley says he can have some if he lets him examine his teeth. He happily agrees, claiming that he takes good care of them. Dr. Smiley sees otherwise and notices a cavity on one of his teeth. Knowing Urkel will try to squirm, he uses laughing gas. It has an adverse effect as Steve goes bonkers laughing and preventing him from doing his job.
Later on, Carl sees the two white officers at a coffee shop. He decides to get their side of the story at Harriette and Mother Winslow's admonition. What Carl finds out is the ugly truth (like Eddie explained) and he's very upset about what happened. He realized that Eddie hasn't done anything wrong after all, and he was indeed racially profiled with false traffic violations against him. The senior officer, Sgt. Jack Evans has revealed himself as a severe racist and has no qualms about what he did to Eddie. Furious and disgusted, Carl gets into a heated argument with Evans about his actions. He maintains that Eddie did nothing wrong but was harassed and racially profiled by him for false traffic violations just because "he was a black kid that was in a white neighborhood." Evans tells him that black kids wouldn't be there unless they were looking for trouble. Carl is irate and annoyed with Evans so much that he threatens to report him to his precinct by filing a complaint and having him investigated. Evans challenges him to do so, but it's still his word against Eddie's. Before he leaves, Carl tells Evans off about what he did was wrong and that he thinks he's a slime ball who doesn't deserve his badge. Evans is insulted by his comment and leaves without saying another word. Carl asks his rookie partner, Officer Kenny Carmichael, to stay a bit. He asks the man about why he joined the police force, since they put themselves on the line and never get credit for it. Carmichael reveals that it was a moot point; he loves and enjoys helping his community out by making a difference with good guys against the bad guys. Carl likes his reasons that he thinks he's both a good guy and a cop. However, he challenges Carmichael to reevaluate his actions as a warning to him because Evans is a venomously bad guy for being a racist and he doesn't want him to end up like his partner did. Forlorn and guilt-ridden, he agrees to do so while Carl leaves a tip and walks out the door.
In the Winslows' living room, Eddie is still upset about what happened when Carl comes home and apologizes for not believing him sooner. He explains that he was a cop and he needed to get their side of the story first before believing him. Eddie understands as Carl tells him they'll file a report in the morning. Eddie's upset and demands that Sgt. Evans (and even Kenny Carmichael, for his weakness) should pay for his mistreatment towards him and will never forgive either for racially profiling him for something he didn't do. Carl understands his anger but he explained that Carmichael isn't a bad guy himself. He just was manipulated by his senior partner into committing a felony by wrongly racially profiling Eddie. Carl convinces he that there's two ways to deal with anger: hold on to it and let it eat him up inside, or give it a voice and make a difference in his life. He even admits that he's been in the exact same situation as Eddie, but he always gave his anger a voice and that's the reason he became a cop. Eddie realizes that Carl was right and agrees to file a complaint against Evans.
In the end credits, Steve has arrived to the Winslow home and gives Laura a note. His note reads due to what happened at Dr. Smiley's Dental Office, he was given laughing gas to calm his nerves. During his check up, he went bonkers by getting a drill stuck to his mouth and as a result he's unable to speak. It also mentions with a recent surgery that was done to one of his teeth, he has to rest and won't be coming by for a few weeks. Laura feigns sympathy for him. Once Urkel leaves, she's excited and celebrates.
Cast[edit | edit source]
Main[edit | edit source]
- Reginald VelJohnson as Carl Winslow
- Jo Marie Payton as Harriette Winslow (credited as Jo Marie Payton-Noble)
- Rosetta LeNoire as Estelle Winslow
- Darius McCrary as Eddie Winslow
- Kellie Shanygne Williams as Laura Winslow
- Bryton James as Richie Crawford (credited as Bryton McClure)
- Jaleel White as Steve Urkel
- Shawn Harrison as Waldo Geraldo Faldo
Guest[edit | edit source]
- Joe Chrest as Officer Carmichael
- Robert Hooks as Dr. Smiley
- Barry Cullison as Officer Evans
- Annie Gagen as Waitress
- Shai as Themselves
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- One of Steve's lines in this episode is "I feel right at home." This most likely is an homage to Jaleel White's real-life father, who is a dentist.
- This is the second episode (of only a few) to emphasize that the Winslow family is African-American.
- Eddie hasn't done any late night carousing since having a job. He had learned his lesson from The Oddest Couple when he had his friend, Weasel, get him into trouble by revealing that he moons meter maids, which offends Carl.
- Darius McCray has stated that this is his favorite episode in the series
- There was supposed to be a part 2 involving Eddie and Carmichael meeting. The rookie officer apologizes for his actions and later testifies against Evans.
Quotes[edit | edit source]
- Carl: Hey sweetheart, how about some pie?
- Harriette: That's sounds good.
- Carl: Yeah, bring me a slice.
- Estelle: Carl, you lazy slug! Get up and get your own pie!
- Carl: Yes, Mother!
- Estelle: As long as you're up, bring me a piece.
- Urkel: [under laughing gas, laughing] I just realized, your name is Doctor Smiley.
- Urkel: But you never smile! Getting you to smile would be like pulling teeth!
- Harriette: [Eddie got pulled over by the cops, and a ticket] Eddie what was the ticket for?
- Eddie: Failure to signal.
- Estelle: I got a ticket once, did you know the sidewalk isn't a passing lane?
- Carl: [ordering in a coffee shop] I'll have a cruller please, and a coffee.
- [stares at the racist cop]
- Carl: Black.
- Carl: [to the racist cop who pulled Eddie over] You know, I really don't know how that badge stays on, because it's pinned to slime.